By People’s Daily Commentator
The so-called “Uyghur Human Rights Policy Act of 2020” recently signed into law by the U.S. deliberately defames the human right conditions in China’s Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region, slanders the autonomous region’s achievements in counter-terrorism and de-radicalization, and grossly interferes in China’s domestic affairs.
It once again exposed the double-standards and hypocrisy of the “American human rights.” To protect human rights is not the aim of the U.S., but a disguise for the White House to undermine China’s stability and development. Under the banner of human right protection, the U.S. is indeed seeking for hegemony.
Xinjiang is a major battlefield of China regarding counter-terrorism and de-radicalization. The essence of Xinjiang-related issues is not about human rights, ethnicity, or religion, but about combating terrorism and de-radicalization.
From the 1990s to the end of 2016, thousands of violent terrorist attacks happened in Xinjiang, inflicting heavy casualties and property losses and greatly impeding the economic development and social progress of the autonomous region.
It’s a consensus now that without secure and stable social environment, the rights to life and subsistence of all ethnic groups in Xinjiang will be endangered, let alone other rights and interests.
The rights to life, health and development are the most basic human rights. Counter-terrorism and de-radicalization are a common responsibility of the international society, and also a necessary approach to safeguard human rights. Over the years, multiple countries and regions have actively explored the ways to combat and prevent terrorism and extremism based on their own conditions.
Learning the international experience on counter-terrorism and starting from its own conditions, China has been making intensive counterterrorism and de-radicalization efforts. Upholding the principle of fighting and preventing terrorism at the same time, the autonomous region has been taking aggressive action against violent terrorist crimes, and at the same time, addressing the problem at its source. It has been making every effort to protect the fundamental human rights of citizens from violation by terrorism and extremism. Specific measures include improving public wellbeing, promoting knowledge of the law through education, and offering education and aid through vocational education and training centers in accordance with the law. The country has laid a solid foundation for Xinjiang’s social stability and lasting peace.
Specifically, the vocational education and training centers established in recent years have effectively curbed the breeding and spread of terrorism and extremism, as well as the frequent occurrences of terrorist activities, helping the autonomous region achieve important phased victory in counter-terrorism and de-radicalization.
Over the past three years, there has not been a single violent terrorist case in Xinjiang. Peace and harmony have returned, and local people have a much stronger sense of fulfillment, happiness and security. The counter-terrorism and de-radicalization efforts aims to eliminate the tumors that impede people of all ethnic groups in Xinjiang from achieving a better life, and have led to social harmony and stability, as well as healthy development in the autonomous region.
Rumors are dispelled by truths and lies are laid bare by facts. Compared with the hearsay and distortion in the so-called Act, those who have actually visited Xinjiang have more say on the autonomous region’s real conditions.
Since the end of 2018, over 1,000 people, including foreign diplomatic envoys to China from nearly 100 countries and regions, UN officials, Geneva-based senior diplomats of various countries, as well as more than 70 groups (or delegations) from political parties, civil society organizations, news media, and religious organizations of various countries have visited Xinjiang’s vocational education and training centers. They believe that the vocational education and training centers are in keeping with the purposes and principles of the UN to combat terrorism and safeguard basic human rights, and have found experience of counterterrorism and de-radicalization for the international society. They hold that the successful example of China is worth learning from.
Terrorism and extremism are a common enemy of the human society. Therefore, the efforts to combat them made by countries shall be free from double-standards, and must not be distorted in a way that goes against international justice and human conscience.
The U.S. is also a victim to terrorism, and shall understand and support China’s counter-terrorism and de-radicalization efforts. However, it is repeatedly interfering in China’s domestic affairs and viciously attacking China’s efforts in this regard in the name of human right protection, which certainly triggers the strong indignation and opposition of the Chinese people.
The U.S. had better reflect on its own institutional problems of human rights, and not make troubles under the banner of human right protection. If it keeps going toward the wrong direction, what lie ahead will only be discredit and self-damage.